Friday, April 1, 2016
How to utilize 360-Degree Feedback to assist your Career Increase
You've received conduct appraisals from your boss, but have you ever considered obtaining 360-degree feedback? If you haven't, it can be a good way to find out the perceptions others hold of you and can provide interesting information on areas for enhancement.
360-Degree Feedback Defined
The typical feedback method most people are familiar with is top-down feedback from management. 360-degree feedback is different in that it obtains performance and behavior opinions from people located all around you, from your manager to your colleague to subordinates. Subordinates could be those who report directly to you or people who, say, worked on a project team that you led. 360-degree feedback is generally used as a developmental tool, with the feedback provided anonymously and consolidated into an overall report.
Why You Should Get A Consultation
The idea is to obtain a full circle of feedback from people all around you, so you can gain a better knowing of how people identify you and how your behavior affects others. The feedback you receive can help you determine if your perception of yourself is similar to or different from the perception others hold of you. It can help you learn things about yourself that you might not have known and provide insights that allow you to adjust certain conducts. You can use the information and insights as you create (or update) your personal development plan.
An Example Of Employing The Feedback
"Bob" was a marketing manager who aspired to move into a people managing role. As part of his career development, he signed up for a training course that included an online 360-degree assessment. Bob had envisioned himself as a knowledgeable employee whom others liked and sought out to take part on project teams.
However, the assessment results showed Bob that others recognized him differently from his perception of himself. A majority of the feedback deemed Bob to be so analytical and detail-oriented that he often lost sight of the big picture and the end goals of projects. Feedback cited situations of Bob's highly analytical style causing team arguments and delaying projects, due to his inability to make decisions. While others valued him for being highly knowledgeable, their perceptions were that Bob tended to devalue the contributions of others, to the point of being disrespectful in meetings by interrupting and even speaking over others when they were trying to talk.
From this feedback, Bob realized that his perception of his behavior didn't match the perception of those around him. Armed with this information, he was able to create a career development plan that included actions to help him better facilitate meetings, training on different social styles and how to better flex his style to others, and the expertise and skills he would need to be able to demonstrate to move properly into a people management role.
Who To Choose To Deliver Feedback
My suggestion is to choose a variety of people, from current and former co-workers to current and former assistants, and even current and former managers. Don't play it safe by choosing only people who know and love you. Your goal is to obtain feedback that you can then use to work on your career growth and development, so choose people who are some of your biggest critics-- that's what I like to do. By choosing some of my biggest critics, I obtain knowledge on how these people perceive me, making it more transparent for me to see where I stand with them. I then use the information to establish areas for enhancement and on ways I might be able to change their perception of me, if it's needed.
If your company doesn't have a leadership program that includes a 360-degree assessment, one of the best things you can do is what "Bob" did-- sign up for an external development course that includes the assessment as part of the program. For example, Franklin Covey currently includes 360-degree assessments in three of their development programs:
- 7 Habits Benchmark: The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People Signature Program
- tQ (Trust Quotient): Leading at the Speed of Trust
- LQ (Leadership Quotient): Leadership: Great Leaders, Great Teams, Great Results
Before you sign up for a development program, check with your manager to see if he or she has any money in the budget for training expenses. In some companies, a certain budget amount is allocated each year to training activities, so you might be able to gain permission to expense part or even all of the program cost.
How To Obtain A 360-Degree Assessment
Check with your HR organization about enrollment in an internal leadership development program that includes a 360-degree feedback survey, support in being aware of the feedback, as well as how to use it as input into your career development plan.